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George H. McLin, M. D.

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George H. McLin, M. D.

Huntington Volunteer (View posts)
Posted: 10 Mar 2004 5:45PM GMT
Classification: Biography
Surnames: McLin, McLean, Gage, Gibbs, Galligan, Bourdon, Hull, Christman, DeForest
From Biographical Memoirs of Huntington County, 1901, pages 344-348

George H. McLin, M. D., the subject of this sketch, is a learned and
eminent physician and surgeon, whom the people of Indiana delight to
honor. He has won distinction in his profession both at home and abroad,
and his profound research and successful practice along several lines of
the healing art have brought him to the notice of prominent medical men
of the northwest and earned for him a proud standing among the most
distinguished of his profession in the state of Indiana.

Dr. McLin is of Scotch descent, and traces the family history back to one
Thomas McLean, as the name was originally spelled, who had an ancestral
estate near Edinburg and who later ran a line of vessels between the city
of Dublin, Ireland, and Newport News, then but a small shipping point on
Chesapeake bay. By reason of a serious difficulty growing out of the
misunderstanding with the governmental authorities, which resulted in the
confiscation of one of his cargoes, Thomas McLean came to America and
settled on a Spanish grant ten miles square, where the city of Nashville,
Tennessee, now stands. He became a large planter and slaveholder, and in
time accumulated much wealth. He figured prominently in the early
history of central Tennessee during the colonial period, and left the
impress of his strong personality indelibly stamped upon that section of
the south. A brother, John McLean, accompanied him to the New World, but
did not leave England, dying in one of the eastern colonies prior to the
Revolution. On coming to America Thomas McLean, having taken the lives
of the captain and mate of the vessel that overhauled his ship, changed
the name to McLin, by which it has since been known. A son of the
original Thomas McLin, also Thomas by name, was born in Nashville and
there grew to manhood and married. He was a farmer by occupation and a
man of sturdy character and determined will. In the prime of life he
immigrated to the Territory of Michigan, and made a settlement at a point
on what was known as the Prairie Rond, not far from the present city of
Kalamazoo. At that time there were but seven white families in the
vicinity and but one house, an insignificant log cabin, which stood on
the site of the now flourishing city. The Potowattomie Indians held
undisputed possession of the country, but gave the new comers no trouble
nor caused them any uneasiness, save an occasional pilfering or driving
away during the night some of the live stock. Thomas McLin took up a
large tract of government land, a part of which he developed, and became
a successful farmer. He was a member of the Society of Friends, and as
such was greatly loved and respected by the community he founded. He
became one of the leading factors in inducing a good class of people to
locate in the country adjacent to Kalamazoo, and bore a distinguished
part in the growth and development of that section of the state. He
spent the rest of his life in Michigan, accumulated a large estate and
died at the ripe old age of eighty. Among his children was Jacob McLin,
father of the subject of this article. In 1830, when a small boy, Jacob
went with his parents to Michigan and grew to maturity on the farm, with
the rugged duties of which he early became familiar. On reaching
manhood's estate he purchased a farm of his own and followed agricultural
pursuits until 1896, when advancing age compelled him to retire from
active life. Disposing of his place in that year, he came to Indiana and
is now passing his declining years in the city of Huntington.

Jacob McLin inherited in a marked degree the sterling qualities of his
ancestors, and at the present time, although over eighty years of age,
retains unimpaired many of his faculties, physical and mental. For a
number of years he served as justice of the peace, and in many ways has
been public spirited, always aiding any worthy enterprise for the general
good and lending his influence to the moral and intellectual upbuilding
of the community. He is a man of pronouncd (sic) political views,
originally a Whig, but since the dissolution of that party he has been a
straightout Republican with the courage of his convictions. The maiden
name of his wife was Adelia Gage. She was born near the city of Buffalo,
New York, and is the mother of three children: George H., Mary H., the
wife of Richard H. Gibbs, and Luther J., the latter a practicing
physician of St. Joseph. Michigan. Mrs. McLin is a well preserved old
lady of seventy-eight, enjoying remarkably good health for one of her
years. Her father, Isaac Gage, a farmer by occupation, was an early
settler of north-western New York and a soldier of the war of 1812. He
served with distinction throughout that struggle and earned a reputation
for gallantry, of which in after years he felt deservedly proud. The
Gage family is of Welsh descent, and was first represented in America
during colonial days.

Dr. George H. McLin was born near the city of Kalamazoo, Michigan, on the
4th day of June, 1843. His boyhood days were spent on the home farm, and
the public schools of the neighborhood furnished the means of his
preliminary education. After attending the district schools until his
fourteenth year he entered the Kalamazoo high school, where he pursued
his studies with the object in view of preparing himself for the medical
profession.

Shortly after quitting school, young McLin began a course of professional
reading under the instruction of Dr. Lyons, a well-known physician of
Kalamazoo, and at that gentleman's death, a year later, he entered the
office of Dr. Weyburn, continuing with him until becoming a student at
the Occidental Medical College, of Cleveland, Ohio. After completing the
prescribed course of that institution and receiving his diploma, the
Doctor began practicing his profession at Buchanan, Michigan, where he
remained two years, meeting with a fair degree of success during that
period. Actuated by a commendable desire to add to his professional
knowledge, he discontinued the practice for a time and entered the
Hahnemann Medical College, Philadelphia, from which in due season he was
graduated. For some time thereafter he did hospital practice in that
city, and, later, animated by a laudable determination to spare no pains
in preparing himself for his life work, became a student of the College
of Physicians and Surgeons, Philadelphia, completing the full course and
then resumed practice. In 1880 Dr. McLin selected Huntington as a
favorable location, and since that date has made this city the
headquarters of his active professional labors. Realizing the necessity
of still further instruction, the Doctor visited Europe in 1887, and
entered The Royal Infirmary at Edinburg as a student of Ophthalmology,
under Dr. Keith, also taking a course in abdominal surgery under
Professor Bantock, of London, one of the world's most distinguished
specialists. Taking advantage of every opportunity while abroad to
increase his knowledge and broaden his professional views, he took a
special course in diseases of the nose and throat under instruction of
the world-renowned Dr. Lenox Brown, of London. Subsequently he continued
his abdominal studies in Paris with Prof. Pean, of the Saute Hospital,
and before leaving that city took a course in the treatment of nervous
diseases at Salpatrie Hospital, under the direction of the celebrated Dr.
Charcot, spending altogether a little over a year in these lines of
special research.

Fortified with the profound knowledge thus gained, Dr. McLin returned to
Huntington and again took up the practice of medicine, meeting with a
success commensurate with the time, means and study expended in
broadening the area of his professional thought. After two years he
concluded to make another trip to the Old World for the purpose of
further studying the eye. He pursued his research in this line under the
faculty of the Royal Ophthalmic Hospital at London, England, and after
completing the course entered upon, spent some time in the Middlesex
Hospital College, where he made further advances in the theory and
practice of his profession.

Returning to the United States with a mind well stored with a knowledge
of the latest discoveries in medical science, the Doctor resumed practice
at Huntington and continued the same with eminent success until 1894,
when he again visited Europe, for the purpose of additional review.
During his third visit abroad, he visited a number of colleges, hospitals
and institutions of various kinds, attending lectures, witnessing
delicate operations, reviewing class work, and meeting on terms of close
personal friendship a number of the most distinguished professional men
of the century. At the expiration of seven very busy months he once more
sought the shores of his native land, and since that time has carried on,
in connection with his practice, the manufacture of a medical drink
called "Kolatona," a discovery of his own combining many curative
properties, besides being a most agreeable and refreshing beverage. This
discovery has already a national reputation, and to meet the constantly
increasing demands for it from all parts of the country, the Doctor has
erected a large laboratory in Huntington, besides establishing, up to the
present time, twenty additional plants in various parts of the United
States. So rapidly has "Kolatona" grown in favor and so satisfactory has
it proven as a nourishing and curative agent, that the Doctor is now
compelled to devote the greater part of his attention to its preparation.
Financially, the enterprise has far surpassed the expectations of all
concerned in its manufacture, and the business promises to become of
colossal magnitude at no distant day.

Dr. McLin was first married in 1866 to Belle Galligan, who bore him one
child, Cleo, married ------------ Bourdon and died at the age of
twenty-three, leaving two children, Bessie and Glenn. The second
marriage of the Doctor was in 1873, to Nellie Hull, by whom he had one
child, Evangeline, who became the wife of William Christman, of Wabash.
By his third marriage, which was solemnized with Adessa Simons, the
Doctor is the father of two children, Ileene, deceased, and DeForest.
While a Republican in politics, Dr. McLin has always been too deeply
engaged in his profession to give much time or attention to political
matters. Fraternally he is a Mason of high degree, having the honor to
hold membership with Kilwinning Lodge, No. 2, Edinburg, Scotland, the
second oldest organization of the kind in the world. He was made a Mason
by special dispensation while visiting Edinburg, by the Prince of Wales,
now King Edward, and feels proud of the distinction thus conferred upon
him by the above ancient body. He is also identified with the Pythian
Brotherhood, belonging to Lodge No. 93, of Huntington.

Dr. McLin's career, as outlined in the preceding paragraphs, shows him to
be the peer of any of his professional associates of northern Indiana.
To prepare himself for his noble calling time, means and opportunities
have been utilized that suffering humanity might be benefited; he has
traveled long and far to sit at the feet of the world's great masters in
the healing art. The old adage that a prophet is without honor in his
own country seems to lack verification in the case of Dr. McLin. For
many years Huntington has been the scene of his professional labors, and
here he has been honored as highly as has ever fallen to the lot of a man
of his years. As physician and surgeon none stands higher, and with a
devotion rarely equalled (sic) and never excelled he pushed to successful
conclusion the most profound research and explored every avenue of wisdom
within the scope of his power. His practice, embracing a wide range, has
been eminently successful, professionally and financially, while his
reputation as a man and citizen has always been above criticism.

All of his enterprises have been crowned with encouraging success and
from the beginning he has impressed all with whom he has come in contact
as a man of strict integrity, strong character, vigorous personality and
possessing a will that hesitates at no difficulties however formidable.
Although determined in all his undertakings, he is genial and popular and
has drawn around him many warm friends. He is one of Huntington counties
most distinguished citiens (sic), and one of Indiana's eminent
professional men.


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